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Google removes 100 million links in 2013

Since January 2013, Google has been asked to remove over 100 million links to pages deemed to be in breach of copyright.

In 2012 there were approximately 50 million link removal requests which indicate that publishers are trying harder than ever to crack down on piracy in 2013.

While copyright holders are trying to reduce piracy, it is widely seen as a futile exercise; when links are taken down, the material is immediately uploaded elsewhere, thus creating a never ending game of cat and mouse.

This problem is primarily down to the fact that there is no central server which can be shut down to stop piracy. The main websites that pose problems for copyright owners are person-to-person sharing websites such as filestube, zippyshare, mediafire and rapidshare.

The takedown notices are mostly made by third parties acting on the behalf of the copyright owners. Last month alone saw 14 million link removal requests to Google from roughly 3,200 copyright owners.

That being said, there is concern that a portion of these requests are mistakes, with the likes of Microsoft asking for content on their own site to be removed. This is mainly because the majority of these requests are totally automated.

Website blocking

With the growing debate around website filtering in the past month, a number of file sharing sites have been blocked by ISPs after a UK court order found the sites in question to be carrying out huge amounts of piracy.